Societies polarised by rising profile of homosexuals
By Terry Kirby, Chief Reporter
Widespread acceptance of homosexuality in many areas of society has been accompanied by a rise in the number of countries where it is punishable by death and a polarisation of attitudes elsewhere, according to a new book.
Although gay and lesbian people are more prominent in society than ever before, the price of this attention is that they are now being persecuted in many parts of the world where they were previously unnoticed.
The book, Sex, Love and Homophobia, by Vanessa Baird and published by Amnesty International, is an overview of the history of gays and lesbians and their current status around the world.
In the foreword, Archbishop Desmond Tutu says the persecution of people for their sexual orientation is every bit as unjust as the crime against humanity that was apartheid. "This is a matter of ordinary justice," he says. "We struggled against apartheid ... because black people were being made to suffer for something we could do nothing about - our very skins. It is the same with sexual orientation. It is a given."
Man faces murder charge again
Police allege an argument broke out between the two men at a home in Amy Street, Tooraweenah, with Mr James shot in the chest as a result.
He was rushed to Gilgandra hospital by friends but died on arrival.
Police facts tendered to the court shortly after his arrest claim Mr Grosser, the victim and a male witness argued about an alleged homosexual advance by the accused towards Mr James that occurred a week before the shooting.
During the argument, the victim and a witness allegedly assaulted Mr Grosser by kicking him and punching him in the face.
Gay rights: A matter of pride for the Metropolitan Police?
The force's attitude towards homosexuality may have changed, but did past prejudice compromise investigations?
By Jason Bennetto
When more than 100 uniformed gay officers took to the streets of London in the annual Gay Pride march, they were doing more than celebrating their sexuality. They were signalling the huge steps said to have been made in recent years by the Metropolitan Police in its attitude towards homosexuals and homophobic crime.
Now, in a move designed to signify its new approach, the Metropolitan Police has established an inquiry to examine whether past prejudice among officers influenced its investigation of anti-gay murders.
By studying the murders of six gay people dating back to 1990, the inquiry is intended to establish whether those investigations were compromised by prejudice and what lessons can be learnt for future murder hunts involving gay, bisexual and transsexual victims. It also aims to boost confidence among gays employed by the police.
The inquiry has been established because concerns remain that many gay people believe the police are still prejudiced against them, although it is widely accepted that the force has made progress in its handling of the issues.